Osaka, the Merchant's Capital of Early Modern Japan

By James L. McClain; Wakita Osamu | Go to book overview

A P P E N D I X
The Confession
of Karigane Bunshichi
(from "Genroku
aburemono no ki")

Six years ago, in Genroku Nine [ 1696], I struck the night watchman of my quarter, and four years ago I injured Kiyobei in Tateuri Horihama.Since I committed other outrages throughout the city, three years ago my parents, on the twenty-second day of the Fourth Month of the Year of the Rabbit [ 1699], made a request to the authorities.After an investigation, I was ordered to jail. My father was seriously ill and died on the fifteenth day of the Fifth Month, however, and because I was her only child, my mother repeatedly made appeals on my behalf.So on the twenty‐ seventh day of the Sixth Month, I was pardoned, released from jail, and instructed not to commit any further transgressions in the city.

In the Tenth Month of the same year that I got out of prison, however, I went with Gokuin no Sen'emon to the licensed quarter and got involved in a street fight. Sen'emon and I cut up about three people, and injured another ten. Among them, Shika no Chōbei was badly hurt and died some months later.Then at Horie Sumiyoshi Bridge, aided by Kaminari Shōkurō and Dōguya Yohei, I attacked someone named Iemon of the residential quarter Tōemon.But he pushed his way through the townspeople and escaped death. I also committed many other violent acts all over the city, but I didn't kill any other people.

Since I am the leader of a gang of ruffians, I have more crimes to confess than the others. I was accompanied by Gokuin no Sen'emon, Kaminari Shōkurō, Tonbi Kan'emon, and others, but since they all played minor roles, I should naturally receive the most severe treatment.I accept responsibility for all the group's crimes. As for the five swords, the dirk, spear and dagger in my home, I took them from my victims when I committed crimes, and have not taken them from any single place.

I have just heard that Kaminari Shōkurō is to be arrested.I know he will not es

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